Club Safety

At the Ottawa River Canoe Club (ORCC), paddling is our passion, but above all, safety reigns supreme. Whether you're navigating the waters, adhering to health guidelines, or entrusting our expert staff, safety is our unwavering commitment. Explore this page to discover the measures we take to ensure your well-being.

Keeping You Safe

Emergency Action Plan

First Aid, CPR & AED

All ORCC staff are required to have CPR and AED training. Emergency equipment can be found at the locations specified below:


  • Weight Room / Schmidt Boat Houe

First Aid Kits

  • Weight Room / Schmidt Boat Houe
  • Brown Can (container with roof)
  • Portable


  • Brown Can (container with roof)

Spinal Board

  • Bown Can (container with roof)

Personal Floatation Device / Life Jackets

  • All ORCC participants must wear a Transport Canada approved Personal Floatation Device (PFD)
  • Only ORCC participants/members above the age of 16 under the direct supervision of a coach in a safety boat which has a PFD for the participant may choose to not wear a PFD (coach must agree to this).

Flag System

The ORCC implements a flag system dictating the level of precaution required when going on the water at any given time. 

Flag Level Flag Level Description
 Green Flag Water is safe for paddling in all boats
Yellow Flag There are big waves and/or high wind. ONLY paddlers under the supervision of a coach OR paddlers who have demonstrated self-rescue will be permitted on the water.
Red Flag No paddlers are allowed on the water unless under the direct supervision of a coach in a motor boat.

In General, participants should stay within 25m of shore during rough water conditions.

Participant Responsibilities

ORCC highly recommends that paddlers check a reliable weather forecast that includes wind, temperature and wave height (such as Environment Canada) before getting on the water as storms/ weather conditions can change very quickly on the river.

  • Paddlers should not be on water earlier than 30 minutes before sunrise and no later than 30 minutes after sunset. Paddlers must have transport Canada approved level of lighting on their boat if they will be on water at dusk.
  • Boats should remain within 50 meters of shore when not accompanied by a safety boat.
  • Paddlers not under the supervision of a coach MUST WEAR a Government of Canada approved PFD.
  • Paddlers under the age of 16 must wear a Government of Canada approved PFD regardless of supervision.
  • Paddlers not under the supervision of a coach should take a boat that they are comfortable in and that they will not capsize.
  • Paddlers should sign out when going on the water and sign back in once they return.
  • Paddlers should check their boats before leaving the dock to ensure the boat is sea worthy and that they have all the necessary safety equipment as defined by Transport Canada (PFD, and if not accompanied by a coach a throwline, whistle, and bailor.)
  • Paddlers in sprint boats may not be “tied”, “strapped”, or “secured” to the boat or its floorboard in any manner. It is recommended that paddlers in surf skis and on SUP boards use leashes especially in rough conditions.

Environmental Policies

Environmental Policies

Questions or Concerns?

Reach out to our safety officer at